Army, LASTMA Clashes: A Monumental Shame – NAOSNP
The National Association of Online Security News Publishers (NAOSNP) has condemned in strong terms the unwarranted physical attacks between personnel of the Nigerian Army and the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), describing it a monumental shame and national disgrace.
In videos making the rounds on the internet since Friday, Nigerians have been made to swallow the bitter pill of shame as its number one Security agency, the Nigerian Army engaged a state Traffic agency in a show of power.
While we at NAOSNP believe that there’s always a cause that results in effects, we however, categorically state here that this is way too out of order for a supposedly pride of the nation, to descend so low and behave like touts among the people it has sworn to protect. The worse part is that most of the men in military uniform, who perpetrated the ignoble act masked with a clear understanding that they were doing the wrong thing. It is only criminals, bandits and terrorists that cover their faces in their activities, and this is a clear indication that our numero uno security agency also breeds and harbours people of doubtful character in their midst. Otherwise, who will behave the way they did in the public domain?
We, however, acknowledge the fact that the Army hierarchy, through the Director, Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Onyema Nwachukwu, has come out to condemn the act, and called for investigation to unravel those involved as well as mandate Operation Checkmate, to nib such future occurrences in the bud.
While that is a right step in the right direction, we further advise that this magnitude of national disgrace should not be allowed to continue or fester as there abounds stories of interagency skirmishes instead of interagency cooperation.
The appointment of General Taoreed Lagbaja as the substantive Chief of Army Staff (COAS), among many other reasons, is to bring sanity to the force, he should therefore, live up to the billing and lead men and officers under his command against bringing shame to the nation.
It should be noted that everyone in recognised uniform is working in the interest of the people, especially the military in whose hands the lives of the population is safeguarded against external insurrection, and the Police, who are the first responders in any internal crisis. But when these agencies turn against one another, what becomes the hope and fate of the man on the street.
It is also with renewed angst that we described the activities of LASTMA, a Lagos State owned agency, as next to irresponsible. Before now, complaints abound on the illegitimate manner with which they carry out their duties. Needless to say that impunity has remained their watchword to the extent that the Executive Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, outlawed the indiscriminate arrest of motorists and impoundment of vehicles. The public is meant to love their Security agencies, not fear them.
It is against this background that we call on the General Manager of LASTMA, Bolaji Oreagba, to put on his thinking cap, live up to expectation and call his men to order.
This suspicious relationship among agencies is no longer comfortable, and NAOSNP will no longer keep quiet over such reckless abuses.
Enough is enough!
National Public Relations Officer
The National President